UPDATE (WLNS): Matt Newburg and Mary Chartier, the attorneys representing Farida and Fakhruddin Attar, released a joint statement following the judges decision “Todays decision by the Judge is exactly what our justice system is designed to do. The Judge found that Congress, through the United States Constitution, lacked the authority to enact the FGM statute. The law warranted this decision and we are happy with it.”
UPDATE: DETROIT (AP) – A federal judge in Detroit says regulating female genital mutilation is up to states and that Congress had no authority to pass the 1996 law banning it.
U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman dismissed mutilation and conspiracy charges Tuesday against two doctors and others involved in the procedure on nine girls at a suburban Detroit clinic.
Jumana Nagarwala says she performed a religious custom on girls from her Muslim sect, the Dawoodi Bohra. Others are accused of assisting Nagarwala.
The charges also were dismissed against four mothers who took their daughters to the Livonia clinic. The girls are from Michigan, Illinois and Minnesota.
Nagarwala faces charges of conspiracy to travel with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct and obstruction.
A spokeswoman says the U.S. attorney’s office is reviewing Friedman’s opinion.
ORIGINAL STORY: A U.S. District Judge in Detroit declared the federal female genital mutilation (FGM) law unconstitutional and dismissed charges against two Michigan doctors and others in a case where minor girls were subjected to the procedure.
Sen. Rick Jones issued a statement following the decision “I’m angry that the federal judge dismissed this horrific case that affected upwards of a hundred girls who were brutally victimized and attacked against their will”
The statement goes on to say “This is why it was so important for Michigan to act. We set a precedent that female genital mutilation will not be tolerated here, and we did so by passing a state law that comes with a 15-year felony punishment. I hope other states will follow suit.”